Strategic design is key to economic recovery

I’d like to offer my thoughts on your recent comment piece (DW 12 February).

The value of the strategic design process and innovation activity is well supported and advocated by Government. The Cox Review made this very clear.

However, the roll-out is likely to be very poor and will fail to deliver the Cox outcomes if the practising experts in innovation and design are not involved.

Members of the strategic sector of the design industry and their chosen representatives are the experts – not the intermediary agencies or university departments, although they should be partners.

What we do not want to see is implementation of the Cox Review becoming a gravy train for the various top-level and regional intermediaries that have failed, to date, to grow demand for our services, insight and knowledge.

Let’s hope we don’t find some elite clique being parachuted into our markets, ambushing our potential clients, waving subsidies and passing on lucrative pump-primed work to a chosen few – some with dubious credentials, track records and quality management systems.

The best people to sell the value of designing, and then actually do it, are designers, because we have the experience and the case studies to prove it.

Let’s not lose this opportunity. We need good news in the economy, and our home-grown strategic design industry is key to creating wealth, jobs and prosperity.

Jonathan A Butters, Principal innovation and design consultant, Butters Innovation, by e-mail

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